November 11th, 2019

Ultimate Reloader Tests RCBS MatchMaster Powder Dispenser

Gavin Gear Ulimate Reloader MatchMaster RCBS Powder Scale Dispenser

RCBS has come out with a new, twin-tube powder scale/dispenser that promises to deliver 1- or 2-kernel precision in the slower, more precise “Match Mode”. If it really works, this new RCBS MatchMaster unit could compete with an Auto-Trickler V3 mated to a Magnetic Force Restoration scale. However, the new MatchMaster employs a strain-gauge scale, so it will be interesting to see how the unit actually performs.

This is an impressive new machine, but it represents a signficant investment. MSRP for the MatchMaster is $1123.95 with street price around $899.00 (MidwayUSA). At around $900.00, the MatchMaster competes with an AutoTrickler system, which is definitely fast and highly precise.

Ultimate Reloader Tests the New RCBS MatchMaster
Our friend Gavin Gear of UltimateReloader.com got his hands on one of the first production MatchMasters. Gavin put the machine through its paces in a “first look” video using two powders, Bullseye and Varget. In the video, Gavin explains the machine’s design features. Then he tests the new MatchMaster in both Standard Mode (faster) and the slower, more precise “Match Mode”. Gavin also published a full-length MatchMaster Review with detailed test results.

RCBS claims that the MatchMaster can dispense charges to within ± 0.04 (four hundreths) grain in Match Mode. That’s 1-2 kernels of an extruded powder such as H4350. Gavin’s testing, using an A&D FX-120i Magnetic Force Restoration scale as a control, showed that RCBS’s claims are solid.

Ultimate Reloader RCBS MatchMaster Powder Scale/Dispenser Review

“You can actually fine-tune the settings for the large dispensing tube and the small tube. There are quite a few parameters… quite a bit of flexibility.” — Gavin Gear.

RCBS MatchMaster Features

— MatchMaster offers two modes, Standard (Faster) and Match (More Precise)
— MatchMaster has two powder dispensing tubes, a larger diameter for large flow and a second smaller tube for precise trickle.
— MatchMaster Settings can be controlled with RCBS Mobile App that works through BlueTooth.
— Powder is removed from the BOTTOM of the machine. This means you must lift the unit up off the bench, then plug a drain tube into the bottom of the unit. See photo.

Gavin Gear Ulimate Reloader MatchMaster RCBS Powder Scale Dispenser

How Accurate Is the MatchMaster?
Near the end of his video review, Gavin threw an 84.20 grain charge of Varget with the MatchMaster. He then weighed the same charge with his A&D FX-120i Magnetic Force Restoration scale. The charge weights agreed exactly at 84.20 grains. When the same pan was placed a second time, the FX-120i showed 84.16 grains. That’s still a mere 0.04 grain variance, which is RCBS’s stated precision claim for Match Mode.

Gavin Gear Ulimate Reloader MatchMaster RCBS Powder Scale Dispenser
Note: This shows first placement of pan on the A&D FX-120i. A second placement of pan on FX-120i stabilized at 84.16 grains.

How Fast is MatchMaster in Each Dispensing Mode?
Gavin started testing the MatchMaster in Match Mode with Bullseye, a popular flake pistol powder. With a 24.00 grain Bullseye charge, one dispensing took 26 seconds (11:40 time-mark), while another took 40 seconds (12:30 time-mark), an average of 33 seconds. In standard mode, the MatchMaster dispensed 24.0 grains of Bullseye in 18.5 seconds average (15.03 time-mark, 15:32 time mark). So Standard Mode was 44% faster with Bullseye.

Next Gavin filled the machine with Hodgdon Varget powder and dispensed a 25.0 grain charge in Standard (Fast) Mode. The first try took 12 seconds (18:30 time mark) to dispense the charge, while the second run of 25.0 grains took just 11 seconds (18:50 time mark).

“Hodgdon Varget performed VERY well with the MatchMaster powder dispenser. I would call this powder the ‘Speed King’ here — it dispensed way faster than the Alliant Bullseye with the settings I used, and I only had one overage which was corrected when I changed powder settings. Bravo!” — Gavin Gear

Then Gavin switched to Match (Precise) Mode and dispensed two more 50.00 grain charges of Varget. These two precision throws finished in 20 seconds (20:38 time mark) and 17 seconds (21:09 time mark) respectively, for an 18.5 second average. That’s very good for large 50.00 grain charges, although the first charge was actually 50.06 grains, about two kernels high. But Gavin explained that the machine permits fine-tuning of the powder type setting. He changed this to account for larger extruded kernels and got a perfect 50.00 grain throw in 35 seconds (22:01 time mark). The “customized” powder settings can be loaded into the RCBS MatchMaster App for future use (See below):

Gavin Gear Ulimate Reloader MatchMaster RCBS Powder Scale Dispenser

Conclusion — Initial Tests Show Good Performance
Based on Gavin’s testing, the MatchMaster delivers on its promises. With Varget extruded powder, it was quite fast, even in “Match Mode”. The dispensed charges were exact within .04 (four hundredths) of a grain, i.e. a couple of kernels, as confirmed by the A&D FX-120i Force Restoration Scale. Gavin actually liked the system of removing the powder through the bottom of the machine, using the supplied tube. It takes some practice, but it worked fine, as you can see in the video.

The RCBS MatchMaster employs a strain-gauge scale. It remains to be seen if there is a bit of drift, as you will observe with strain-gauge dispensers in the $200-$300 range, such as the original RCBS ChargeMaster. During his MatchMaster test session, Gavin said he did not observe any drift, a good sign. Overall, it looks like this is an impressive machine. But, with a $899.00 price, this is a serious investment. Anyone considering the new MatchMaster will also want to look at the AutoTrickler V3 system with AutoThrow. It costs $520.00, NOT including a lab-grade Magnetic Force Restoration balance ($600 to $1000+).

Matchmaster bluetooth mobile app

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November 11th, 2019

Bargain Finder 216: AccurateShooter’s Deals of the Week

Accurateshooter Bargain Finder Deals of Week

At the request of our readers, we provide select “Deals of the Week”. Every Sunday afternoon or Monday morning we offer our Best Bargain selections. Here are some of the best deals on firearms, hardware, reloading components, optics, and shooting accessories. Be aware that sale prices are subject to change, and once clearance inventory is sold, it’s gone for good. You snooze you lose.

1. Multiple Vendors — LabRadar Chronograph, $499.95 ($60 OFF)

brunos scope sale

The LabRadar is arguably the most sophisticated consumer chronograph on the market. These units rarely go on sale — but here’s your chance. Right now you can now get a LabRadar for $499.95 — that’s $60 off the normal price. (Sale price good through December 2, 2019). Purchase direct from Mylabradar.com, or order from leading vendors Midsouth Shooters (in-stock $499.95), Bruno’s (back-order $499.95), and Creedmoor Sports ($499.95 in stock). NOTE: It may be possible to get additional discounts. One Forum member posted: “I was able to get the LabRadar unit for even less last year by applying a Brownells Discount Code.” If you order a LabRadar from Brownells, try Code M8Y for $20 off $200+ orders.

2. Bruno Shooters Supply — Open Box / Demo Scope Sale

brunos scope sale

Here’s your chance to grab a great scope that’s basically brand new and discounted just because it was on display. Check out Bruno’s Open Box/DEMO Scope Sale and choose from assorted brands and models. There are major-brand scopes for just about any kind of shooting — Benchrest, F-Class, PRS, Hunting, ELR, and even Multi-Gun competition.

3. Brownells — Electronic Muffs, $29.99 (29% Off)

Brownells electronic premium muffs discount sale ear protection

Brownells new, Second Generation Premium Electronic Earmuffs incorporate dual microphones that let you hear range commmand while suppressing harmful noises. These affordable muffs fold for easy storage, and you can plug your smartphone into the 3.5mm input jack. Right now these muffs are discounted from $41.99 to $29.99 — a 29% savings!

4. Amazon — Teslong Digital Borescope, $49.99

teslong digital borescope

The impressive Teslong digital borescope offers capabilities that rival optical systems costing $700 or more. This compact, electro-optical, cable-type borescope outputs sharp, high-resolution images and VIDEO to desktop computers, laptops, as well as Android tablets and smartphones. Check out our Full Teslong Review complete with inside-the-barrel videos. At $49.99 this is a great value. NOTE: This unit does NOT currently work with iPhones and iPads.

5. Tractor Supply — Winchester 26-Gun Safe, $429.99

winchester vault safe gunsafe

This is a good value in a medium-sized safe with enough capacity for the average gun-owner. Size 57″ H x 28″ W x 20″ deep, this Winchester Safe is rated for 26 long guns (real capacity for scoped rifles will be less). The safe has an electronic keypad lock with override key. The door is held with 8 steel locking bolts, and the safe is fire-rated for 45 minutes. If you don’t have a Tractor Supply store near you, shipping is available for $80.10.

6. CDNN — Sig P229 9mm Pistol, $679.99 on Sale

winchester vault safe gunsafe

The popular SIG Sauer P229 pistol is carried by thousands of law enforcement professionals worldwide. The compact size of the P229 makes it ideal for concealed carry. For those who prefer a classic metal-framed gun with external hammer, the P229 is an great option, and $679.99 is a fine price, considering this SIG P229 Nitron pistol comes complete with night sights, 3 magazines, case, AND holster.

7. Midway USA — Lyman Case Trim Xpress, $111.99

lyman case trim xpress

Among dedicated case trimmers, Lyman’s impressive new Case Trim Xpress, delivers top-tier performance for the price. This well-designed machine comes bushings to fit most common calibers. The carbide cutter head precisely adjusts in .001″ increments using a knurled adjustment wheel. Our tests comfirm this unit trims cases quickly and accurately. To see a video of the Case Trim Xpres action, check out our recent Lyman Case Trim Xpress Review.

8. Home Depot — Low-Profile Muffs + Shooting Glasses, $14.83

Walker low profile ear muffs eye protection glasses sale

Every shooter should have an extra set of shooting muffs and protective earwear. These will provide vital protection for friends/guests you bring to the range. And let’s face it, sooner or later you’ll forget your own muffs, so it’s wise to keep an extra set in your vehicle at all times. Home Depot a great deal on Walker’s NRR 22 Muffs + ANSI Z87.1-rated Shooting Glasses. Get both as a Combo Set for just $14.83. Midsouth also has this combo for $19.99.

9. EuroOptic — Nikon Prostaff 1000i Laser Rangefinder, $179.95

Nikon prostaff laser rangefinder 1000i sale bargain

Nikon’s Prostaff 1000i Laser Rangefinder features ID (incline/decline) technology with both horizontal distance and actual distance display modes. Choose single or continuous measurement (up to 8 seconds). Rated to 1000 yards on reflective objects, the PROSTAFF 1000i is a smart, affordable option for hunters. Compact and reliable, it will do the job at half the price of other popular rangefinders.

10. Midsouth — MTM Flip-Top 100-rd Ammo Box, $4.63

mtm case-guard .308 Win .243 ammo case box

MTM Case-Gard ammo cases are made of virtually indestructible polypropylene that will not warp, crack, chip, peel, expand or contract. The mechanical hinge is guaranteed for 25 years. Snap-Lock latch protects contents from accidental spilling. This mid-size MTM ammo box will hold .22-250, .243 Win, and all .308 Win Family cartridges. A smaller 100-rd MTM box fits .223 Rem and similar cartridges for just $4.17.

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November 10th, 2019

Go with the “O” — O-Rings May Reduce Run-Out When Sizing

reloading die O-ring
reloading die O-ring

Here’s an inexpensive procedure that can help you load straighter ammo, with slightly better measured concentricity (i.e. less run-out) on the case necks and bullets. Simply use a Rubber O-Ring on the underside of the die locking ring. This allows the die to self-align itself (slightly) to the case that is being sized. Without the O-Ring, if the flat surface on the top of your press is not perfectly square with the thread axis, your die can end up slightly off-angle. This happens when the bottom of the locking ring butts up tight against the top of the press. The O-Ring allows the die to float slightly, and that may, in turn, reduce the amount of run-out induced during case sizing.

Top prone shooter GSArizona has tried this trick and he says it works: “Go to your local hardware store and get a #17 O-Ring (that’s the designation at Ace Hardware, don’t know if its universal). Slip the O-Ring on the die and re-adjust the lock ring so that the O-Ring is slightly compressed when the die is at the correct height. Size and measure a few more cases. You will probably see a slight improvement in neck concentricity as the die can now float a bit as the case enters and leaves it. This isn’t going to be a dramatic improvement, but it’s a positive one.”

We want to stress that adding O-Rings to sizing dies may help some reloaders, but we don’t offer this as a panacea. Try it — if using the O-Ring reduces measured runout that’s great. If it doesn’t, you’ve only spent a few pennies to experiment.

reloading die O-ring

Lee Precision makes die lock rings with built-in O-Rings. Lee’s distinctive lock ring design allows the same kind of self-alignment, which is good. However, Lee lock rings don’t clamp in place on the die threads, so they can move when you insert or remove the dies — and that can throw off your die setting slightly. By using an O-Ring under a conventional die lock ring (that can be locked in place), you get the advantages of the Lee design, without the risk of the lock ring moving.

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November 9th, 2019

“Cheat Sheet” — Print Handy Drop Chart for Your Rifle

Hornady Ballistics Calculator

Hornady Ballistics CalculatorNeed a simple, easy-to-use drop chart for your rifle? Something you can tape right to the buttstock? Then check out Hornady’s handy Online Ballistics Calculator. This user-friendly calculator will compute your drops accurately, and output a handy “Cheat Sheet” you can print and attach to your rifle.

Here’s how it works. From the Ballistics Calculator Page, simply input G1 or G7 BC values, muzzle velocity, bullet weight, zero range, and a few other variables.

Click “Calculate” to view the full chart (shown below). Then click “View Cheatsheet” and the simpler, 4-line Drop Chart (shown above) appears. Click “Print” and you’re done!

The online ballistics caculator is easy to use. You can select the basic version, or an advanced version with more data fields for environmental variables (altitude, temperature, air pressure, and humidity). You can also get wind drift numbers by inputing wind speed and wind angle.

Conveniently, on the trajectory output, come-ups are listed in both MOA and Mils — so this will work with either MOA clicks or Mil-based clicks. There are more sophisticated ballistics solvers available on the web (such as the outstanding Applied Ballistics Online Calculator), but the Hornady Calculator is very simple and easy to use. If you just want a basic drop chart, you may want to check this out.

Hornady Ballistics Calculator

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November 8th, 2019

Recoil Comparison — .223 Rem vs. 6mmBR vs. .308 Win

6mmBR NormaMany visitors to the site ask us, “I’ve got a .223 and .308. What will a 6mmBR Norma (6BR) give me that I’m not getting already?” Well first you may well average somewhat smaller groups than your current .223 or .308 rifle (assuming the 6BR has a quality barrel and trigger). A good .308 Winchester can be superbly accurate, no question about that, but the lesser recoil of the 6BR works in the shooter’s favor over a long string of fire. Even with a Rem 700 or Savage action factory action, a 6BR with a benchrest stock, premium barrel, and a high-quality chambering job should deliver 5-shot groups in the high twos to mid-threes, provided you do your job. We have one 6BR rifle that shoots Lapua factory-loaded 6BR ammunition in the low twos and high ones. That’s exceptional, we admit, but it still shows how the 6BR is an inherently accurate cartridge, even with factory loads.

Compared to a .223, the 6BR offers a better selection of high-BC projectiles and small-maker match projectiles (such as Bart Sauter’s “Hammer” and the Vapor Trail line). The 6BR will also deliver considerably more power on the target. Compared to the .308 shooting 168gr MatchKings, a 6BR shooting 105-107gr bullets offers better ballistics all the way out to 1000 yards. (The story changes with .308s with very long barrels pushing the 180-210 grain projectiles). Plus, for most people, the 6BR is just easier to shoot than a .308. Recoil is less than half of the .308 Win cartridge. Both the .308 and 6BR chamberings offer good barrel life, but the 6BR uses 15-18 grains less powder, saving you money. Here’s how the 6BR stacks up vs. a number of popular calibers:

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November 8th, 2019

Rebate Central — Save Money with End-of-Year Rebates

rifle remington browning rebate hornady vihtavuori SK ammo rebate

There are some good rebate programs going on right now, but most conclude in just a few weeks. To take advantage of these deals you’ll need to start your shopping soon. Here are some current Rebate Programs for rifles, loading equipment, ammunition, and shooting accessories. Some of these offers can save $100 on a new firearm. Other deals can deliver free bullets, or cash-back for your ammo and powder purchases.

Vihtavuori Powder Rebate Program 2019
Buy Vihtavuori reloading powder and earn $5.00 back per 1-pound bottle, $10.00 per 4-pound bottle, and $20.00 back per 8-pound bottle. Stock up now!
Expires: 1/1/2020

SK Ammo Ammunition Rebate

SK Ammunition Holiday Rebate 2019
Purchase SK Rimfire Ammo and earn $5.00 back per brick (500 rounds). Maximum 20 bricks for $100 total. Rebates issued via prepaid Giftcards.
Expires: 1/1/2020

Remington Cash Back
Save $50-$75 on select Remington rifles, including popular Rem 700 varmint rifles. Get Cash Back via Mail-in Rebate.
Expires: 12/31/2019

CCI First Shot Savings Rimfire Rebate
Buy a new rimfire rifle or handgun PLUS two boxes of CCI rimfire ammunition, and get Rebate for ammo up to $20.00.
Expires: 12/31/2019

Youth Shooting Rebates
Browning supports 4-H, AIM, SCTP and Youth Shooting Organization Athletes. Buy a new Browning firearm, get up to $100 in Cashback Rebates.
Expries: 12/31/2019

Hornady Get Loaded 2019
Receive 500 or 100 Free Bullets with Purchase of select Hornady reloading products. NOTE: Read terms VERY carefully and keep copies of receipts.
Expires: 12/31/2019

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November 6th, 2019

Shooting USA Worth Watching This Week — A-Tips Featured

Hornady A-Tip

You may want to tune in to Shooting USA tonight. There are three interesting topics covered in the one-hour cable TV broadcast. Hornady’s A-Tip Bullets are featured in a product spotlight. Next the ultimate speed-shooting contest, the USPSA Steel Challenge, is covered. And for the tactical/PRS crowd, Shooting USA interviews Tom Fuller of Armageddon Gear. The hour-long Shooting USA show runs on the Outdoor Channel Wednesday nights at 9:00 PM Eastern and Pacific time, 8:00 PM Central time.

1. Hornady A-Tip Bullets — Worth the Very High Price?
This week Shooting USA reviews Hornady’s new A-Tip bullets. These A-Tips generated a lot of buzz because of their high price and unusual packaging. These expensive ($75-$85/box) aluminum-tipped projectiles have very consistent bullet BCs according to Hornady. They are sold in sequential order for consistency, and shipped in clear plastic egg-crate style packaging to protect the tips. The jury is still out on these bullets, as we haven’t seen them used much in competition outside the PRS realm. But if you are curious, check out this report.

Hornady A-Tip

Hornady A-Tip

2. Steel Challenge — Fun and Fast Steel Plate Competitions
For fans of steel shooting, Shooting USA will cover the famous Steel Challenge, a speed shooting competition with eight standardized steel plate stages. It’s all about speed — the top guns can nail all five targets in under three seconds. Run by the Steel Challenge Shooting Association (SCSA) a division of the USPSA, the Steel Challenge is fast and exciting. Regional matches are held at affiliated clubs through the USA, with a large annual World Speed Shooting Championships (WSSC) that attracts competitors from around the world. In 2018 and 2019 the WSSC was held in Talladega, Alabama. LEARN MORE HERE

3. Armaggedon Gear — Tactical Accessories
Finally, this week’s Shooting USA episode visits Armageddon Gear in Georgia. This company, founded by former U.S. Army Ranger Tom Fuller, sells support bags, gun cases, slings, suppressor covers, scope covers, and a wide variety of other accessories popular with the PRS/NRL crowd. With a 22-year Military career behind him, Tom Fuller is creating and selling what he knows, shooting gear. Fuller’s company is an American success story, as Armageddon Gear now provides products to the U.S. Military, Law Enforcement, as well as PRS/NRL competitors.

Armageddon Gear Game-Changer Bag
Game Changer PRS bag

Armageddon Gear Founder Tom Fuller:

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November 4th, 2019

Bargain Finder 215: AccurateShooter’s Deals of the Week

Accurateshooter Bargain Finder Deals of Week

At the request of our readers, we provide select “Deals of the Week”. Every Sunday afternoon or Monday morning we offer our Best Bargain selections. Here are some of the best deals on firearms, hardware, reloading components, optics, and shooting accessories. Be aware that sale prices are subject to change, and once clearance inventory is sold, it’s gone for good. You snooze you lose.

1. EuroOptic.com — HUGE Nikon Scope Close-Out Sale

Nikon tactical scope close-out sale

EuroOptic.com is running a huge close-out sale on quality Nikon riflescopes. This sale includes the excellent Black FX1000 (FFP), and Black X1000 (SFP) tactical scopes, plus the M-Tactical and P-Tactical series optics. If you are looking for a great tactical or hunting scope at a crazy low price, head over to EuroOptic this week. For example the 4-16x50mm FX1000 MRAD is marked down from $749.95 to just $369.95, a 50% savings! And the 2-7x32mm P-Tactical and M-Tactical series scopes are just $99.95! Nikon scope mounts are also discounted.

2. Sportsman’s Warehouse — T/C LRR 6.5 Creedmoor, $1149.99

thompson center LRR

Thompson Center (T/C), a Smith & Wesson company, has a reputation for building accurate rifles and the Thompson Center LRR in 6.5 Creedmoor is no exception. This versatile rig features a high-quality aluminum chassis stock with adjustable cheekpiece and LOP. The action includes a +20 MOA Picatinny-style rail. The 5R barrel is fluted and fitted with a factory muzzle brake. This is a great choice for PRS Factory Class.

3. EuroOptic — 50% Off Minox with Mauser Rifle Purchase

mauser rifle minox scope
mauser minox sale

The Mauser M18 is a proven hunting rifle offered in many popular calibers/cartridge types. If you’re looking for a fine, affordable hunting rifle definitely consider the M18. And for added incentive you can get 50% OFF a Minox scope with the purchase of a Mauser rifle from EuroOptic.com. CLICK HERE to get the 50% OFF coupon which you can redeem with Minox USA after your purchase.

4. Bruno Shooters Supply — Open Box / Demo Scope Sale

brunos scope sale

Here’s your chance to grab a great scope that’s basically brand new and discounted just because it was on display. Check out Bruno’s Open Box/DEMO Scope Sale and choose from assorted brands and models. There are major-brand scopes for just about any kind of shooting — Benchrest, F-Class, PRS, Hunting, ELR, and even Multi-Gun competition.

5. Midsouth — Hornady RAPiD Safe AR Gunlocker, $238.49

hornady gun vault

Storing guns for quick access has usually come at the detriment of security. Now with the RFID-enabled Hornady RAPiD Safe AR Gun Locker you can securely store your guns AND access them in an instant. With an RFID fob or bracelet you can open the locker without using a key or even punching in a code. Order soon and get a Hornady rebate — two free boxes of their Critical Defense ammo. See how the RAPiD Safe Gun Locker operates in the VIDEO BELOW:

6. Area 419 — AutoTrickler Hopper/Funnel Lid, $65

area 419 hopper lid

If you own an AutoTrickler, you probably wish you could cover up the top of the Trickler unit after you’ve filled it with powder. Well, wish no more as Area 419 has now released a very nicely-designed AutoTrickler Hopper Lid. Not only does this metal Hopper Funnel/Lid cover your Trickler powder supply, but it also nearly doubles the amount of powder you can keep in the Hopper. Nice product Area 419!

7. Natchez — Bushnell 1300-Yard Laser Rangefinder, $124.99

bushnell range finder

Whether for hunting, practical competitions, or varminting, a laser range finder is a great tool to have. Snatch up the Bushnell Prime Laser Range Finder and know the exact distance all the way out to 1300 yards. Priced at under $125, this ultra-affordable unit is small enough to fit in a pocket for easy storage.

8. Amazon — Highwild Adjustable Target Stand Base, $23.99

target stand

Carrying large targets in your vehicle is never fun or easy but with the Highwild Adjustable Target Stand Base you can quickly assemble frames that break down easily for transport. Just bring wood pieces and cardboard backer, and clamp the stand together. The black clamp units have screw-in clamps that hold the wood elements. Combine multiple stands larger target arrays. You can create your own custom-size stands with 1×3 wood pieces.

9. Amazon — Tactical Eyewear Kit, $15.99

tactical eyeware

Wearing eye protection should be second nature for anyone around firearms for so many obvious reasons. Whether for you, a backup or to have for those shooting with you grab a set of XAegis Tactical Eyewear Kit that come complete with 3 different lenses and protective case. You can easily switch from Gray, to Yellow, to Clear lenses, popping them into the frame. This 3-Lens shooting Kit is an Amazon #1 Best Seller.

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November 2nd, 2019

Cartridge Comparison Guide Covers 250+ Cartridges

Cartridge Comparison Guide

Cartridge Comparison GuideThe Cartridge Comparison Guide is a remarkably comprehensive 340-page, spiral-bound book. Covering over 250 cartridges, the Second Edition of the Cartridge Comparison Guide is the product of many years of labor by Andrew Chamberlain, a Utah-based hunter. Andrew says his Guide “compares every factory available cartridge from the 17 calibers up to the 50 caliber cartridges”. (Sorry, most wildcat cartridges are not covered.) Chamberlain’s Guide also compiles cartridge data from major ammunition manufacturers such as Barnes, Federal, Hornady, Norma, Nosler, Remington, Sierra, Swift, Weatherby, and Winchester. It shows the optimal velocity achieved for each bullet weight and calculates bullet energy, recoil, and powder efficiency. Large color photos illustrate handgun and rifle cartridges.

The Cartridge Comparison Guide provides data for thousands of cartridge/bullet/velocity combos. Quick reference data sheets and ballistics charts cover Trajectory, Velocity, and Energy out to 500 yards. The Cartridge Comparison Guide also offers a firearms lexicon, plus Appendices covering Cartridge Selection for Game Animals, Bullet Selection/Design, Bullet Expansion, Wound Channel Characteristics and more.

New Content in Second Edition of Cartridge Comparison Guide
The Cartridge Comparison Guide (Second Edition) costs $30.99 plus shipping and tax. CLICK HERE to visit the Online Store where you can order the 340-page book. Here’s what’s new in the Second Edition:

  • Addition of Shotgun Ammunition (Both Slug and Shot loads).
  • Momentum Calculation for all Rifle, Shotgun and Handgun loads.
  • Integration of Shotgun Slug Ammunition with Center Fire Rifle Data Tables.
  • Factory Load Summary Added (Shows manufacturers and loads produced).
  • One factory load and one hand load for every bullet weight available in each cartridge.
  • Over 90 pages of additional ballistics content (roughly 35% more than in First Edition).

Cartridge Comparison Guide

Great Resource for Hunters
One of Chamberlain’s main goals in creating the Cartridge Comparison Guide was to help hunters select the right cartridge for the job: “This started as a personal project to gather information on the more popular cartridges commonly used for hunting. I wanted to find the best all-around performing cartridge and rifle that a guy on a budget could shoot. I began comparing cartridge performance, versatility, bullet selection, powder efficiency, recoil generation vs. energy produced, standing ballistic data for different environments….”

Giant Cartridge Poster for Computer Wallpaper (1665×1080 pixels)
Here’s a great illustration of hundreds of cartridges and shotshell types. For dedicated reloaders, this would work great as desktop “wallpaper” for your computer. CLICK HERE for full-size image.

cartridge poster

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November 1st, 2019

Ogives, Meplats, Boat-Tails and Other Bullet Design Elements

Bullet Design Zediker

Noted gun writer Glen Zediker (author of Top Grade Ammo), regularly contributes tech articles to the Midsouth Shooters Blog. One of Glen’s Midsouth Blog articles covers Bullet Design. We suggest you read the article — even seasoned hand-loaders will learn a few things about projectile properties (and how to choose the right bullet design for your needs). Glen also wrote a recent Blog article on cartridge pressure signs, linked below

Read Zediker Bullet Design Article | Read Zediker Pressure Signs Article

Glen explains: “A ‘match’ bullet’s job is to perforate a piece of paper. A bullet designed for varmint hunting, on the other hand, is designed to produce explosive impact, and one for larger game hunting strives to strike a balance between expansion and penetration. However! No matter how it’s built inside, there are universal elements of any bullet design, and those are found on the outside.”

Bullet Design Zediker

In his article, Glen identifies the key elements of a bullet and explains how they are defined: “Base, that’s the bottom; boat-tail, or not (flat-base); shank, portion of full-caliber diameter; ogive, the sloping ‘nosecone'; tip, either open or closed (open it’s called the ‘meplat’). The shape of the ogive and the first point of ‘major diameter’ are extremely influential elements. The first point of major diameter can vary from barrel brand to barrel brand because it’s the point on the bullet that coincides with land diameter in the barrel — the first point that will actually contact the barrel as the bullet moves forward. When there’s a cartridge sitting in the rifle chamber, the distance or gap between the first point of major diameter and the lands is called ‘jump’, and, usually, the less there is the better.”

Bullet Design Zediker

Ogives Analyzed — Tangent vs. Secant Bullet Designs
Glen notes that bullet designs reflect secant or tangent profiles, or a combination of both: “The two essential profiles a bullet can take are ‘secant’ and ‘tangent’. This refers to the shape of the ogive. A tangent is a more rounded, gradual flow toward the tip, while a secant is a more radical step-in, more like a spike. Secants fly with less resistance (less aerodynamic drag), but tangents are [often] more tolerant of jump [or to put it another way, less sensitive to seating depth variations].”

Glen adds: “Ogives are measured in ‘calibers’. That’s pretty simple: an 8-caliber ogive describes an arc that’s 8 times caliber diameter; a 12-caliber is based on a circle that’s 12 times the caliber. The 8 will be a smaller circle than the 12, so, an 8-caliber ogive is more ‘blunt’ or rounded. Bullets with lower-caliber ogives are more tolerant of jump and (usually) shoot better, easier. Higher-caliber ogives [generally] fly better, farther. This is an important component in the ‘high-BC’ designs.”

Learn More in Zediker Books
Glen has authored a number of excellent books for hand-loaders and competitive shooters. Here are three of his most popular titles, including his latest book, Top Grade Ammo:

zediker book glen top grade ammo zediker book glen top grade ammo zediker book glen top grade ammo

All these titles are available from Midsouth Shooters Supply. Click each cover above to purchase from Midsouth.

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November 1st, 2019

Tech Tip: Don’t Store Brass and Ammo Near Ammonia Solvents

Ammonia Solvent Brass Cracking MTM

Chances are that many of you have packed away your ammo and shooting supplies for the winter. Maybe you put your brass in a storage bin that might also contain solvents, old rags, or used bore swabs. Well, if you use any ammonia-based solvents, we suggest you separate the brass and ammo and keep it away from potential ammonia vapors. This is because long-term exposure to ammonia fumes can cause cracks to form in your brass. This can lead to case ruptures and possible injury.

This case-cracking phenomenon has been called Season Cracking, a form of stress-corrosion cracking of brass cartridge cases. Season cracking is characterized by deep brittle cracks which penetrate into affected components. If the cracks reach a critical size, the component can suddenly fracture, sometimes with disastrous results. If the concentration of ammonia is very high, then corrosion is much more severe, and damage over all exposed surfaces occurs. The brass cracking is caused by a reaction between ammonia and copper that forms the cuprammonium ion, Cu(NH3)4, a chemical complex which is water-soluble. The problem of cracking can also occur in copper and copper alloys such as bronze.

Season Cracking was originally observed by the British forces in India a century ago. During the monsoon season, military activity was reduced, and ammunition was stored in stables until the dry weather returned. Many brass cartridges were subsequently found to be cracked, especially where the case was crimped to the bullet. In 1921, in the Journal of the Institute of Metals, the phenomenon was explained by Moor, Beckinsale, and Mallinson. Apparently ammonia from horse urine, combined with the residual stress in the cold-drawn metal of the cartridges, was responsible for the cracking.

Ammonia Solvent Brass Cracking MTM
Don’t store ammunition (or brass) for long periods in a box or container holding ammoniated solvents:

The Australia Department of Defense (AUSDOD) has also explored the problem of brass cracking caused, at least in part, by exposure to ammonia. A study was done to see whether the amount of cracking (from ammonia exposure) varied according to the duration and temperature of the annealing process used on the brass. CLICK HERE to read AUSDOD Research Report.

Story idea from Boyd Allen. We welcome reader submissions.
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October 31st, 2019

Pumpkin Blastin’ with High Explosives — Amazing Stuff

Halloween Wallpaper explosion pumpkin
Image from WallpapersBuzz.

Today is October 31st, Halloween (originally “All Hallows Eve”). That means it’s pumpkin time. Just how much fun can you have with pumpkins? Watch these two videos and find out. In the first video, the RatedRR team sends a few orange gourds to pumpkin heaven using Det Cord, C4, and binary explosives. The sequence starting at the 2:00 minute mark in the first video is truly amazing. WARNING: DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME!

Watch Pumpkin Blasting with Explosives

In the next video, a pumpkin carved as a Death Star serves as the target for a .50 caliber rifle (looks like a Barrett M82 .50 BMG). As you may guess, the pumpkin Death Star suffers the same fate as the Hollywood version in Star Wars. NOTE: At the 0:42 mark in the video, a graphic displays “30,000 FPS”. That’s the high-speed camera’s frame-per-second rate, NOT the projectile velocity in feet-per-second.

Watch .50 BMG Rifle vs. Death Star Pumpkin

Warning: These demonstrations were carried out on closed ranges by experienced professionals certified to use explosives. Possession of C4 and Det Cord may be a violation of various Federal, State, and local laws. Detonating cord and C4 are classified as high explosives and are regulated by the BATFE. Don’t even think about trying to repeat these stunts on your own.

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October 31st, 2019

Watch Ammo Being Made in Revealing Video

Sellier Bellot Ammunition Videos

Sellier & Bellot is one of Europe’s older ammunition manufacturers, producing a wide variety of rifle and pistol ammo. The video below shows ammunition being made from start to finish, starting with raw materials. This is a fascinating video that is well worth watching. It shows some amazing machines in operation.

EDITOR: Guys, this really is an exceptional video that shows every aspect of production. I have watched dozens of videos about ammo making. This is definitely one of the BEST. Take the time to watch.

Based in Vlasim, Czech Republic, Sellier & Bellot was founded in August 5, 1825 by Louis Sellier, a German businessman of French lineage. His family were royalists who fled France during the French Revolution. Louis Sellier began manufacturing percussion caps for infantry firearms in a factory in Prague, Bohemia on the request of Francis I, the Emperor of Austria. Sellier was later joined by his countryman Jean Bellot.

Sellier & Bellot has also produced an interesting CGI video that shows what happens inside a rifle chamber and barrel when a cartridge fires can’t be seen by the naked eye (unless you are a Super-Hero with X-Ray vision). But now, with the help of 3D-style computer animation, you can see every stage in the process of a rifle round being fired.

3D animation bullet ammunition in rifle

In this X-Ray-style 3D animation illustrates the primer igniting, the propellant burning, and the bullet moving through the barrel. The video then shows how the bullet spins as it flies along its trajectory. Finally, this animation shows the bullet impacting ballistic gelatin. Watch the bullet mushroom and deform as it creates a “wound channel” in the gelatin.

Watch Video – Cartridge Ignition Sequence Starts at 1:45 Time-Mark

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October 28th, 2019

Bargain Finder 214: AccurateShooter’s Deals of the Week

Accurateshooter Bargain Finder Deals of Week

At the request of our readers, we provide select “Deals of the Week”. Every Sunday afternoon or Monday morning we offer our Best Bargain selections. Here are some of the best deals on firearms, hardware, reloading components, optics, and shooting accessories. Be aware that sale prices are subject to change, and once clearance inventory is sold, it’s gone for good. You snooze you lose.

1. Midsouth — Rock Chucker Supreme Reloading Kit, $299.99

Deals of Week RCBS Rock Chucker Supreme Kit

Everything you see above can be yours for just $299.99. Great Deal. Right now, Midsouth is selling the Rock Chucker Supreme Master Reloading Kit for $299.99, a fine price considering all the hardware you get: Press, Primer Tool, Scale, Powder Measure, Loading Tray, Reloading Manual and more. Heck, the Rock Chucker press alone is worth $165.00+. This is good starter kit for any reloader with sturdy items (such as the Rock Chucker press), that will last a lifetime.

2. Amazon — Bushnell CONX Rangefinder and Kestrel, $499.99

Bushnell Kestrel combo laser rangefinder

With this bundle deal, you get a “smart” Bushnell Elite CONX laser rangefinder (LRF) PLUS a Kestrel Sportsman Ballistics Weather Meter for just $499.99. The LRF, which is rated to 1,760 yards (one mile), communicates via Bluetooth with CONX App on both iOS and Android smartphones. You can load three Custom Ballistic curves and ARC rifle mode provides bullet-drop/holdover in MOA or Mils with multiple sight-in distance options. The LRF body is tripod compatible and waterproof. There is even a diopter adjustment for image sharpness.

3. Palmetto State Armory — 9mm S&W Pistol and PSA Lower, $299.99 with Rebate

Palmetto State Armory S&W Shield 9mm pistol AR15 AR AR-15 complete lower assembly

With this insanely good deal from Palmetto State Armory, you can get a pistol AND half an AR rifle for just $299.99 after S&W $50 Rebate ($349.99 PSA price before rebate). The deal is for a PSA AR-15 complete lower with Magpul MOE stock PLUS a M&P Shield compact 9mm Pistol. This is an incredible deal. The S&W M&P Shield 9mm Handgun sells for over $400 elsewhere online. S&W Rebate Info HERE.

4. Sportsman’s Warehouse — Great Gun Sale (100 guns on sale)

great gun sale

If you’re in the market for a new handgun, rifle, or shotgun, then head over to the Sportsman’s Warehouse Great Gun Sale. There are 100 different firearms on sale — hunting rifles, shotguns, defensive pistols — you name it. There are so many options, we decided to link the full sale page, so you can pick your own favorites from 100 different gun options.

5. CDNN — Bushnell Equinox Z Night Vision Binoculars, $189.98

Bushnell night vision Equinox Z binoculars

Hunters can benefit from a binocular night-vision solution. Right now the impressive Bushnell Equinox 2×40 Night Vision binoculars are just $189.88 at CDNN Sports. This is a great deal, a real bargain. These same Equinox Z Binoculars currently sell for $325.98 on Amazon, nearly twice as much! Equinoz Z features include: optical clarity, powerful infrared illumination to 500 feet, image capture, video recording capability, and day/night viewing. Most competitive night vision are monoculars.

6. Palmetto State Armory — $30 Rebate on Savage Hunting Rifles

Savage Hunting Rifle Rebate

Palmetto State Armory is running a promo on Savage hunting rifles this month. Purchase any AXIS/Trophy/Apex or Engage Hunter and receive a $30 Mail-In-Rebate. If you’re looking for a deer rifle with a nice camo finish — this is a good deal. Rifles start at just $329.99, so with the $30 rebate your net cost is just $299.99. NOTE: This $30 Savage Factory Rebate applies to purchases made from ANY Savage dealer, as long as you purchase from 10/1/2019 through 10/30/2019. For example, the rebate applies to Savage rifles purchased through Cabela’s or MidwayUSA.

7. Amazon — Teslong Digital Borescope, $49.99

teslong digital borescope

The impressive Teslong digital borescope offers capabilities that rival optical systems costing $700 or more. This compact, electro-optical, cable-type borescope outputs sharp, high-resolution images and VIDEO to desktop computers, laptops, as well as Android tablets and smartphones. Check out our Full Teslong Review complete with inside-the-barrel videos. At $49.99 this is a great value. NOTE: This unit does NOT currently work with iPhones and iPads.

8. Midsouth — New .308 Win Lake City Brass, $74.99/250 cases

Lake City .308 Win 7.62x51 cartridge brass M1A

Midsouth Shooters has acquired a large quantity of excellent Lake City 7.62×51 (.308 Win) Primed Brass. NOTE, this is New Brass that has never been fired. However it is described as “pull-down”, meaning the brass had originally been assembled into loaded ammo. The brass comes PRIMED with CCI #34 primers, with crimped primer pockets. The brass is sold in 250-count bags for $74.99. That works out to just $0.30 per case — a great deal for primed, strong Lake City Brass. This is good stuff for M1As and hunting rifles.

9. Amazon — Jialitte Scope Bubble Level, $10.99

Scope Optic bubble level 30mm 1

All serious rifle shooters need a scope level. This nicely designed Jialitte Scope Bubble Level features a 30mm milled inside diameter, plus an inner insert ring so it will also fit 1″-diameter main tubes — that dual-diameter versatility is a nice feature. We also like the way the unit is nicely radiused, and has a low profile in the middle. Price is just $10.99 with free shipping. User reviews have been very positive. You could easily pay $35.00 or more for a 30mm scope level. Purchasers have praised this product — nearly all verified buyers rated this five stars.

10. Amazon — MTM Cleaning Rod Case, $22.89

mtm cleaning rod case discount

Good cleaning rods are expensive and can be easily damaged if you’re not careful. To protect those valuable cleaning rods, we recommend the MTM cleaning rod case which holds four rods as well as cleaning supplies. This case protects your rods both at home and while traveling. With this handy, durable case you can stop worrying about bending or breaking those important cleaning rods.

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October 27th, 2019

New StaBALL 6.5 Powder from Winchester — Temp Stable

Winchester ball spherical propellant powder temperature stable staBALL 6.5

Winchester has just introduced a new ball propellant, StaBALL 6.5, which it claims is very temp-stable. This means velocities and pressures should not vary greatly across a wide range of ambient temperatures. Winchester states: “StaBALL 6.5 is the world’s first temperature-insensitive Ball Powder, stable in extreme-hot or extreme-cold temperatures.” Winchester also claims StaBALL 6.5 can offer 30-200 fps greater velocities than other powders with similar burn rates. This new powder also has additives to reduce copper fouling. StaBALL 6.5’s burn rate and load density is good for popular cartridges such as .223 Rem, 6mm Creedmoor, 6.5×47 Lapua, 6.5 Creedmoor, and .270 Win. If StaBALL 6.5 can really deliver excellent metering, temp stability, more speed, AND less fouling — Winchester could really have a winner.

Winchester ball spherical propellant powder temperature stable staBALL 6.5

Metering Advantages of Ball Propellants
As there are existing very temp-stable extruded powders, such as Reloder 16 and H4350, what’s the big deal here? Well ball powders, with their small spherical granules, flow easily and meter well. This means ball powders can be thrown in manual powder measures with great precision. So StaBALL 6.5 could have advantages for hand-loaders using manual powder measures or progressive presses with mechanically-operated charge dispensers.

Reloading Data is ONLINE Now

Reloading Data is NOW Available on the Winchester website for a wide variety of cartridges including: 22 Nosler, .223 Rem, 224 Valkyrie, 22-250 Rem, 6GT, 6×47 Lapua, 6mm Creedmoor 6.5×47 Lapua, 6.5 Creedmoor, .260 Rem, .270 Win, 7mm-08, .30-06, 300 WSM and more. To get official LOAD DATA, scroll below the product description, select a cartridge type, and then click the RED “Get Reloading Data” tab. Here are two of 13 listed load options (55-115 grain bullets) for the 6mm Creedmoor:

Winchester ball spherical propellant powder temperature stable staBALL 6.5

Winchester’s StaBALL 6.5 Product Description States:

StaBALL 6.5 is the world’s first temperature-insensitive BALL® Powder, stable in extreme-hot or -cold conditions. It provides optimal loading density in cartridges appropriate for the burn speed, which is ideal for 6mm Creedmoor, 6GT, 6.5 Creedmoor, 7MM-08, .270 Winchester, and many more.

Typical of a ball powder, precise metering contributes to improved velocity and pressure standard deviations, ingredients that are paramount to match grade accuracy!

This “environmentally green” propellant has copper fouling reducer additives, meaning longer durations of competition and field shooting without having to clean the bore. Precision accuracy throughout the match!

Velocity levels obtainable, depending on the cartridge, are 30-200 fps greater than other propellants in its class.

StaBALL 6.5 powder is available in 1 lb. and 8 lb. containers.

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October 27th, 2019

Sunday GunDay: German Centerfire Rifle with Rimfire Conversion

sauer 202 varmint rifle 22LR

Shoot Rimfire Ammo from your Centerfire Rifle

Wouldn’t it be cool if you could shoot .22 LR rimfire ammo from your regular hunting or tactical rifle? That would be ideal for low-cost training right? Well, this IS possible, provided you have a rifle that was designed with a .22 LR conversion in mind. One such firearm is the remarkable Sauer 202 from Germany. This impressive centerfire rifle is available with a factory-engineered .22 LR rimfire conversion. Read on to learn how Sauer’s cool .22 LR conversion works.

Sauer 202 Rifle: .308 Win/6.5×55 with .22 LR Conversion
Forum member “Tooms” sent us a report on his very special Sauer 202 with a .22 LR conversion kit. Sauer 202 rifles feature a “Quick-change barrel system”. The barrel is clamped into the receiver with crossbolts providing tension. This allows barrels to be swapped in a few minutes with simple tools.

Tooms, from Denmark, explains: “The rifle began as a Sauer 202 Avantgarde Gold in .308 Win. I have added a 6.5×55 match barrel, plus a wide flat-bottom match fore-arm with rail for handstop and bipod. The .22 LR system [originally] cost $1000.00 [including] barrel, bolt, magazine well assembly, and magazine. The barrel is attached by three cross-bolts and the magazine well assembly is attached by one screw that fits into the barrel.”

sauer 202 varmint rifle 22LR

sauer 202 varmint rifle 22LR

Using this “Quick-change system”, Tooms can easily remove his centerfire barrel and swap in a .22 LR barrel. Then he places the factory conversion kit into the magazine well. This kit provides a rimfire bolt, a fitted sleeve for the rimfire bolt, and a magazine housing. This is a full Sauer factory-designed system so it works flawlessly. With the bolt closed, you can see the “new” .22 LR chamber in the front section of the loading port. On the silver section of the bolt you can see the rimfire extractor on the side.

sauer 202 varmint rifle 22LR

The .22 LR Conversion Really Works
The Sauer 202 Varmint rifle shoots very well with the .22 LR conversion, as the 50m target at right shows. Though quite expensive, the conversion kit essentially transforms your centerfire rifle into fully functional, mag-fed precision rimfire rifle. That makes the Sauer 202 much more versatile as a hunting platform. It also allows you to cross-train with inexpensive ammo. You don’t have to purchase another scope, trigger, or stock. And you enjoy the exact same stock fit and ergonomics whether you’re shooting centerfire or rimfire. In some countries where gun ownership is severely restricted, it may be easier, from a legal standpoint, to purchase a .22 LR conversion kit than to obtain a permit for a second rifle.

The Sauer 202 rifle line-up has been replaced by the Sauer 404 series which has much in common. To learn more about the complete line of Sauer rifles visit the J.P. Sauer USA website. You’ll also find more information on the primary J.P. Sauer & Sohn German website, www.Sauer.de. Though out of production, some Sauer 202s are still for sale at EuroOptic.com.

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October 26th, 2019

Federal Now Offers Custom-Loaded Precision Ammunition

Federal custom handloading center hand-loaded rifle shotshell ammo ammunition Berger Sierra Nosler

Don’t have time to hand-load your own ammo, or don’t have all the equipment and dies needed? There’s a new option — something that’s actually quite revolutionary in the ammo industry. Federal is now offering custom-loaded ammunition. You choose the cartridge type and bullet type and Federal technicians put the ammo together. Think about it — this could be an interesting option for hunters who only need a few rounds a year, or if you want to try out a bullet/cartridge combo for the first time.

Order Federal Custom Ammunition ONLINE through the Federal Custom Shop.

Federal custom handloading center hand-loaded rifle shotshell ammo ammunition Berger Sierra Nosler

“Each round is painstakingly handloaded to order by our team of expert engineers in our state-of-the-art reloading workshop. Veteran craftsmen combine the best components with extra quality checks at every stage for the most consistent velocity, accuracy, and overall performance. Loads are then hand-checked for final inspection and cleaned before being custom-packed in durable, personalized packaging.”

10 Centerfire Cartridge Types and Many Bullet Options
Currently, you can choose from 10+ rifle cartridge types and a wide selection of quality bullets from Berger, Sierra, Nosler, Federal, Barnes, Swift, and more. Along with rifle ammo, Federal will offer custom TSS Shotshells. NOTE: Federal Custom Shop ammo will be sold direct-to-consumer only.

Right now, centerfire rifle shooters can choose more than 10 different cartridges including 6.5 Creedmoor, 6.5-284 Norma, 257 Weatherby, 243 Winchester, 257 Roberts +P, and more. Shotshell customers can custom order a large variety of 10-gauge and 28-gauge loads.

“If it’s not in Federal’s vast catalog as factory-loaded ammo, we may have it listed on our website as a load we will custom hand-load for you,” notes Federal Ammunition President Jason Vanderbrink. “For example, Barnes 120-grain Tipped TSX in 6.5-284 Norma and 28-gauge TSS turkey loads aren’t products we list in our catalog, but you can certainly order them through our Custom Shop.”

The Custom Shop handloading center is located at Federal’s main factory in Anoka, Minnesota. For more information, including how to order, what specific load options are available, and shipping details, visit: FederalPremium.com/custom-shop.html.

Federal custom handloading center hand-loaded rifle shotshell ammo ammunition Berger Sierra Nosler

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October 26th, 2019

Reloading Rescue — How to Remove a Case Stuck in a Die

stuck72

Western powders, ramshot, norma, accurate

To err is human… Sooner or later you’ll probably get a case stuck in a die. This “fix-it” article, which originally appeared in the Western Powders Blog, explains the procedure for removing a firmly stuck cartridge case using an RCBS kit. This isn’t rocket science, but you do want to follow the directions carefully, step-by-step. Visit the Western Powders Blog for other helpful Tech Tips.

Curing the Stuck Case Blues

decapstem72Sticking a case in the sizer die is a rite of passage for the beginning handloader. If you haven’t done it yet, that’s great, but it probably will eventually happen. When it does, fixing the problem requires a bit of ingenuity or a nice little kit like the one we got from RCBS.

The first step is to clear the de-capping pin from the flash hole. Just unscrew the de-capping assembly to move it as far as possible from the primer pocket and flash hole (photo at right). Don’t try to pull it all the way out. It won’t come. Just unscrew it and open as much space as possible inside the case.

Place the die upside down in the padded jaws of a vise and clamp it firmly into place. Using the supplied #7 bit, drill through the primer pocket. Be careful not to go too deeply inside the cartridge once the hole has opened up. It is important to be aware that the de-capping pin and expander ball are still in there and can be damaged by the bit.

Drill and Tap the Stuck Case
taping72drilling72

Once the cartridge head has been drilled, a ¼ – 20 is tap is used to cut threads into the pocket. Brass is relatively soft compared to a hardened tap, so no lube is needed for the tapping process. RCBS says that a drill can be used for this step, but it seems like a bit of overkill in a project of this nature. A wrench (photo above right) makes short work of the project.

RCBS supplies a part they call the “Stuck Case Remover Body” for the next step. If you are a do-it-yourselfer and have the bit and tap, this piece is easily replicated by a length of electrical conduit of the proper diameter and some washers. In either case, this tool provides a standoff for the screw that will do the actual pulling.

pulling72fingers72

With an Allen Wrench, Finish the Job
Run the screw through the standoff and into the tapped case head. With a wrench, tighten the screw which hopefully pulls the case free. Once the case is free, clamp the case in a vice and pull it free of the de-capping pin. There is tension here because the sizing ball is oversized to the neck dimension as part of the sizing process. It doesn’t take much force, but be aware there is still this last little hurdle to clear before you get back to loading. Don’t feel bad, everyone does this. Just use more lube next time!

wholekit72unstuck72

Article find by EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.
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October 25th, 2019

Eye in the Sky — Drone View of 1122-Yard Shooting Session

Texas .223 Rem Drone Video 1000 Yards Gorilla Ammo

Many of our readers have never had a chance to shoot much past 600 yards. How far away does a 1000-yard+ target really seem to the naked eye? Well this short video answers that question. Gorilla Ammo, the video’s producers, used a camera-carrying aerial drone to fly downrange from the firing line all the way out to 1122 yards (and back again). Watch the drone footage at 0:00-0:07 and especially 0:48-1:03. The “bird’s-eye view” really gives you a sense of the distance. The “fly-back” at 0:48-1:03 time-mark is what makes this video worth watching.

The video features prone shooting at steel targets placed at 750 and 1122 yards. We do apologize for the lame, “oh so serious” voice-over which attempts to make this rather ordinary range session seem like some kind of life-changing experience. (Frankly, you may just want to turn the sound off — it’s that annoying.) It’s really not that big a deal to hit steel at 750 yards with a quality AR-15, chambered in .223 Rem, shooting Sierra 77 grain MatchKings.

Texas .223 Rem Drone Video 1000 Yards Gorilla Ammo

Hitting Steel at 1122 Yards with 2540 FPS Ammo Can Be Challenging
The 1122-yard hits are a bit more impressive. Gorilla Ammo lists a relatively sedate 2540 fps Muzzle Velocity for its .223 Rem 77gr SMK ammunition. According to JBM Ballistics, at 1125 yards, that 2540 fps load has 68.3 MOA of drop from a 100-yard zero (firing at sea level and 80° F ambient). Morever the bullet goes trans-sonic around 750 yards (losing stability) and is traveling just 933 fps at impact. And the wind’s the killer — at 1125 yards, with this bullet/load, a mere 2 mph, full-value wind change can move the Point of Impact over three feet!

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October 24th, 2019

SAFETY NOTICE: Hodgdon Recalls ALL IMR 4007 SSC Powder

hodgdon imr 4007 ssc recall safety notice

PRODUCT SAFETY WARNING AND RECALL NOTICE FOR IMR 4007 SSC POWDER
Hodgon and IMR are officially announcing a product safety warning and recall notice for IMR 4007 SSC smokeless powder. All lots of powder are included in the recall. IMR has received reports that this particular powder, sold in 1 pound and 8 pound containers, could become unstable due to possible rapid deterioration. Use of this product may result in combustion, fire damage and/or possible serious injury.

What to do if you have IMR 4007 SSC Powder

1. If you are in possession of IMR 4007 SSC, STOP USING THE PRODUCT IMMEDIATELY! Fill the powder container with water, which will render the product inert and safe for disposal.

2. Mail, email or fax a copy of the powder label with the lot number to the contact information below, and include your name, address, phone and email. Be sure to reference the IMR 4007 SSC recall.

EMAIL: help@imrpowder.com
CALL: 1-800-622-4366 or 913-362-9455
FAX: 913-362-1307
WRITE: Hodgdon Powder Company, Inc., 6430 Vista Drive. Shawnee, KS 66218

3. You may select a replacement IMR smokeless powder product of your choice, which will be shipped to you at no charge.

What to Do With Ammo Already Loaded with IMR 4007 SSC
If you have loaded the powder subject to this recall into ammunition, we recommend that you pull the bullets, remove the powder and wet the powder with water for safe disposal. IMR deeply regrets any inconvenience this may cause, but we believe in safety first.

Need More Recall Information?
You can get more information about this IMR 4007 SSC recall by emailing help@imrpowder.com. You can also call 1-800-622-4366 or 913-362-9455, or send a fax to 913-362-1307.

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